2017 Queensland Oaks Day Preview & Tips

By: Jared Timms
June 1st, 2017

2017 Queensland Oaks Day will take place at Doomben Racecourse on Saturday, following the BRC’s decision to move the meet from Eagle Farm.

Kenedna will take her place in the Group 1 Queensland Oaks field. Photo: Ultimate Racing Photos

Kenedna will take her place in the Group 1 Queensland Oaks field. Photo: Ultimate Racing Photos

Strong fields have been confirmed for all eight races, however we have analysed each horse in detail, in order to help you find a winner on 2017 Queensland Oaks Day.

Every race on 2017 Queensland Oaks Day will be contested under black type conditions and the action is set to get underway with the running of the Listed The Phoenix (1200m) for two-year-olds at 12:12pm and will conclude after the Listed Helen Coughlan Stakes (1200m) is contested at 4:33pm.

Race 1 (12:12pm) Listed The Phoenix (1350m)

The Phoenix has drawn a strong field of twelve two-year-olds, potentially on trial for next weekend’s Group 1 JJ Atkins (1600m). Pardoe (barrier 6) is yet to taste anything but success through three starts this time in and has drawn ideally into this field, with Hugh Bowman in the saddle. A comfortable winner of the Listed Oxlade Stakes (1200m) a fortnight ago, the Red Dazzler colt should relish the conditions of this race and is undoubtedly the horse to beat. Noble Hussler (barrier 3) has gone amiss at his two most-recent starts, but is a winning chance at his best. Pure Luck (barrier 9) faces a big step up in class, but has shown plenty of ability through two career starts, while the Darren Weir-trained Snitzepeg (barrier 12) will need luck in running from a wide berth.

Tip: No. 1 Pardoe ($3.80)

Race 2 (12:47pm) Listed Bill Carter Stakes (1200m)

Race 2 has drawn some class interstate raiders like Danzon (barrier 15) and Pretty Fast (barrier 7), but also features a number of excellent local chances. Liam Birchley will launch a two-pronged attack in the race, including Real Princess (barrier 8) and Black Mink (barrier 4). Real Princess was luckless when eighth in the Oxlade Stakes last time out, but should enjoy a step up in distance, while Black Mink has drawn ideally into the Bill Carter Stakes field, carries winning form into the race and has the notable advantage of the Jeff Lloyd in the saddle. Skate To Paris (barrier 3) has found excellent form this season and is a live hope in the Bill Carter Stakes, particularly as he could receive the run of the race from his inside draw.

Tip: No. 10 Black Mink – Each Way ($5.50/$2.55)

Race 3 (1:22pm) Listed Spear Chief Quality (1630m)

An outstanding field of milers will line up for the Spear Chief Quality, including High Midnight (barrier 11). Trainer James Cummings saddle High Midnight in a number of top-line staying races through the early stages of his career, but the horse has shown plenty of ability at shorter trips and returned to the races for a close second behind Jungle Edge in the Group 3 BRC Sprint (1350m) a fortnight ago. Berry Delicious (barrier 9) has quickly improved through two starts this time and will carry benefit into this race, while Provincial Championships winner Maryore (barrier 10) should enjoy a third attempt at the Queensland mile. Gully Command (barrier 2) savaged the line for an impressive win amongst smart company at Doomben a fortnight ago and represents terrific value at current Spear Chief Quality odds.

Tip: No. 11 Gully Command – Each Way ($14/$3.80)

Race 4 (2:00pm) Group 2 PJ O’Shea Stakes (2200m)

The PJ O’Shea Stakes (formerly Eagle Farm Cup) has drawn only six runners this year, but the field is oozing with class and almost every horse is a live chance. Preferment (barrier 2) will be retired to stud following this race and is primed for a big performance after placing fourth in the Group 1 Doomben Cup last time out. Locals Cylinder Beach (barrier 5) and Rudy (barrier 6) are both more than capable at the distance and under the conditions and the latter ran on extremely well to finish third in the Doomben Cup last time out. High Church (barrier 4) won the Listed Warrnambool Cup (2400m) in dominant fashion two starts ago, but was unable to make up the distance late when second in the Listed Port Adelaide Cup (2500m) last time out. Single Gaze (barrier 3) has found good form this time and should prove extremely tough to beat. Garbhan (barrier 1) completes the PJ O’Shea Stakes field, but faces a big task in overcoming his rivals.

Tip: No. 1 Preferment ($3.90)

Race 5 (2:40pm) Listed Lightning Handicap (1050m)

A capacity field of sprinters will take to the barriers for the Lightning Handicap, including topweight Felines (barrier 6). The Conatus mare ran a handy fourth in the Group 2 Challenge Stakes (1000m) first-up this time, before hitting the line well for fifth in the Group 1 The Galaxy (1100m). Having since won the Hawkesbury Gold Rush (1100m) and finished fifth in the talent-stacked Listed Ortensia Stakes (1100m), Felines is the horse to beat in this field, particularly with Hugh Bowman aboard. Painte (barrier 9) failed to fire last start, but has the class to be right in the finish of the Lightning Handicap, while Londehero (barrier 15) has steadily built to the task this time and will also be right in the finish, with luck from a wide draw.

Tip: No. 1 Felines ($4.80)

Race 6 (3:20pm) Group 2 Moreton Cup (1200m)

Formerly known as the QTC Cup, the Moreton Cup has drawn an outstanding field of thirteen sprinters to Doomben on Saturday. Third in the Stradbroke Handicap last winter, The Virginian (barrier 3) returned to the races for a classy win in the Listed Chief De Beers (1050m) a fortnight ago and will only improve at the distance on Saturday. Peter & Paul Snowden will launch an impressive attack in the race, in the form of Dothraki (barrier 7), Snippets Land (barrier 10) and Attention (barrier 4); all of whom will be right in the finish of this race on class alone. Godolphin runner Federal (barrier 14) should carry benefit into this race and will enjoy an improving track, while stable mate Handfast’s (barrier 8) consistency could also bode well in the Moreton Cup.

Tip: No. 3 Snippets Land – Each Way ($21/$6)

Race 7 (3:59pm) Group 1 Queensland Oaks (2200m)

The Queensland Oaks has drawn one of its strongest fields in recent memory and represents terrific value to punters from a betting perspective. Egg Tart (barrier 10) stormed home to win the Group 1 Australasian Oaks (2000m) last time out and the filly should prove tough to beat at 2200m once more in the Queensland Oaks. Ana Royale (barrier 12) may find some issue in stepping back in distance from her last-start win in the Group 3 SA Fillies Classic (2500m), but her class suggests that she’ll right up to the mark of the Queensland Oaks. Kenedna (barrier 11) has found career-best form this season; winning three black type races and finishing second in the Australasian Oaks and she is arguably the filly to beat on Saturday. Oklahoma Girl (barrier 7) savaged the line for second behind Kenedna in the Group 2 The Roses (2000m) a fortnight ago and arguably has the most upside of the leading Queensland Oaks contenders.

Tip: No. 6 Oklahoma Girl – Each Way ($9/$3)

Race 8 (4:33pm) Listed Helen Coughlan Stakes (1200m)

A classy field of fillies and mares has been confirmed for the Helen Coughlan Stakes; the final race on 2017 Queensland Oaks Days. Bidii Babe (barrier 14) returned to winning form via an excellent performance in the Listed Bright Shadow Quality (1200m) a fortnight ago and should again prove tough to beat on Saturday. Kinshachi (barrier 9) failed to fire last time out, but is more than capable of a return to winning form in this race, while Nancy (barrier 16) is also one of the field’s class horses, but has been charged with overcoming an awkward barrier and topweight. Inspired Estelle (barrier 12) will require a horse to be scratched to gain a start, but she will carry plenty of improvement into this race and is not without a chance with a light weight in tow.

Tip: No. 12 Maternal – Each Way ($8.50/$3.20)

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